Rapper Sean “Diddy” Coomes has been accused of rape, battery and sex trafficking in a lawsuit filed by US singer Cassie over their decade-long relationship, the world’s news agencies have reported.
In the lawsuit filed against the producer and music mogul in New York federal court, Cassie, whose birth name is Cassandra Ventura, alleges that Coomes lured her into his “flashy, fast-paced, drug-fueled lifestyle” soon after met him and signed to his label when she was 19 and he was 37 in 2005.
Attorney Ben Brafman said Coomes “vehemently denies” the allegations.
Ventura herself, now 37, said Coomes, now 54, began abusing her as soon as their relationship began.
The lawsuit alleges that the musician was “prone to uncontrollable rage” and subjected Cassie to “severe” beatings, including punching, kicking and stomping on her. He allegedly forcibly drugged her and forced her to have sex with other men while he masturbated and filmed them.
The suit says that when she tried to end the relationship in 2018, Coomes forced her into his Los Angeles home and raped her.
“After years of silence and obscurity, I’m finally ready to tell my story and speak up for myself and for other women who face violence and abuse in their relationships,” Ventura said in a statement.
Attorney Brafman called her claims “lies.”
“For the past six months, Mr. Coomes has been subjected to Ms. Ventura’s persistent demand for $30 million under the threat of writing a damning book about their relationship, which has been unequivocally dismissed as gross blackmail,” his statement said. Despite withdrawing her initial threat, Ms. Ventura has now resorted to filing a lawsuit laced with baseless and outrageous falsehoods designed to tarnish Mr. Coomes’ reputation and seek payment,” the lawyer added.
Ventura’s attorney, Douglas Wigdor, responded in a statement that Coomes offered her “an eight-figure sum to keep her quiet and prevent this lawsuit from being filed. She rejected his efforts and decided to give voice to all the women who suffer in silence.”
Coomes is among the most influential hip-hop producers and leaders of the past three decades.
She and Ventura began dating in 2007 and have been in an on-and-off relationship for more than a decade.
Cassie rose to fame with the Ryan Leslie-produced hit single Me & U, which reached number one on the Billboard Hip-Hop Singles Chart in 2006. The song is the lead single from her only studio album of the same title.
As an actress, Cassie has appeared in several television and film projects, including Fox’s Empire, Step Up 2:The Streets, and Spenser Confidential.
Coomes is building one of the biggest empires in hip-hop, blazing a trail with several organizations attached to his famous name. He is the founder of Bad Boy Records and a three-time Grammy winner who has worked with numerous top-tier artists including Notorious B.I.G., Mary J. Blige, Usher, Lil Kim and more.
The mogul created the Sean John fashion line, launched the music-focused TV channel Revolt and produced the MTV reality show Making the Band.
This year he released his fifth studio album, The Love Album: Off the Grid, which earned two Grammy nominations this month.